Indian Institute of Management Rohtak inducted the 14th batch of its flagship Post-Graduate Programme (MBA program). The new batch represents the geographic diversity of India and reflects IIM Rohtak’s commitment to woman empowerment. Girls account for 78 percent of the new batch, which has representation from 24 States and Union territories. The gender diversity in the new batch breaks IIM Rohtak’s own record of 69 percent female representation, which was established last year. The batch consists of multiple high achievers, including national-level medallists in Swimming and Karate. To welcome and sensitize the new batch, IIM Rohtak conducted its induction ceremony on the 1st and 2nd July of 2023. The ceremony was graced by multiple eminent personalities including Shri Kamal Kishore, Member Secretary, National Disaster Management Authority; Mr. Sameer, internationally acclaimed lyricist, and Guinness World Record Holder for penning maximum number of songs; and Lt. Gen. Syed Ata Hasnain (retd.), recipient of multiple awards including PVSM, UVSM, UYSM, AVSM, SM, and VSM. The ceremony was chaired by Prof. Dheeraj Sharma who welcomed the dignitaries and students.
In his inaugural speech, Prof. Sharma expounded on the unique opportunity provided to the students due to their efforts and that of their family. He elucidated the opportunities available to students and advised them to leverage all three types of learning – instructional, peer-to-peer and self-initiated for their future growth.
The chief guest Shri Kamal Kishore, Member Secretary, National Disaster Management Authority, congratulated the students and introduced the illuminating concept of “rooted cosmopolitanism,” where one is rooted in his/her culture and society but is comfortable everywhere. He highlighted the need to go beyond corporate social responsibility and create socially responsible corporates. Drawing upon his rich experience in disaster management, he explained through multiple examples, both national and international, the role of incompetent management in converting natural hazards into natural disasters. Expanding this chain of thought, he highlighted the ongoing need for generalists with strong domain expertise. In his concluding speech, he exhorted students to focus on long-term value creation and sustainability.
The honourable guest of honour, Mr. Sameer began by congratulating the students and narrating his life lessons. In his inimitable style, Mr. Sameer focused on the role of resilience and life-long learning in his success stories. Mr. Sameer narration showcased how a combination of humility, dedication to craft and adaptability enabled him to thrive as a lyricist and compose over 7,000 songs in a 40-year-old career, thereby establishing and extending his position as the Guinness World Record Holder for the composition of maximum number of songs. Through anecdotes, he showed how the seeds of current success are sown in the habits of childhood and encouraged students to focus on karma (work); cultivate their passion; and develop a positive and forgiving attitude.
The first keynote speaker, Lt. General (retd.) Syed Ata Hasnain, expanded the new batch’s conceptualization of security by vividly and brilliantly expanding their understanding of security. He showed how national security goes beyond safeguarding of borders and includes poverty alleviation, energy security, technological excellence, and food security. His speech, which beautifully integrated history, geography, and strategy, brought home to the students the sobering realization that national security is the responsibility of all citizens, not only the army. He concluded with his sagacious advice on the need for India to increase its investment in maritime security.
The second day of induction included three panel discussions. In the first panel, multiple luminaries of the corporate world discussed on the topic of “Understanding Consumption Behavior in Achieving 5 trillion Dollar Economy”. The panellists highlighted the growth potential of India and expressed confidence that Indian economy will not only cross the $5 trillion mark in near future but also surpass it many times over in the future. The session was moderated by Prof. Koustab Ghosh, who highlighted India’s ongoing growth story. Mr. Naveen Kundu, MD Ebix Cash, vividly described the multifarious growth opportunities in India with respect to tourism, manufacturing and information services. Mr. Gaurav Himkar, Chief Strategy Officer Hero Cycles Group, described the tectonic upgrading of consumer preferences in India and highlighted the role of continuous learning and inclusive income growth. Dr. Seema Singh, Head of Medical Affairs, HEAPS identified the growth drivers of medical industry and described how new consumer goals, enabled by rising incomes, are leading to a voluntary demand for medical services like wellness programs and cosmetic surgeries. Mr. Manoj Madhusudanan, Senior VP and country head, EXL Services congratulated the students for being fortunate enough to be born in a period of high growth and opportunity in India. He identified human resources as India’s greatest strength and suggested that India’s large and talented pool of professionals are perfectly poised to leverage data analytics and AI for driving economic growth.
The second panel included high-ranking law enforcement and income tax officers who deliberated on the topic “Creating positive business environments through law.” The panellists illuminated the students about the multiple points of convergence between law enforcement, economic development, and robust management principles. Prof Dheeraj Sharma, Director IIM Rohtak, moderated the session and shed light on the nature of policing services as a prime example of negative services. He also highlighted the role of theories like ‘Broken Window’ theory in shaping actual policing practices, thereby elucidating the theory-praxis link. Shri Ashok Kumar, DGP Uttarakhand, and Shri Shatrujeet Kapur DGP Haryana highlighted the necessity of rule of law for sustained economic growth and mentioned how India’s rule-governed system and independent judiciary give it a competitive advantage. Shri Pratap Reddy, DGP Karnataka, elaborated on the utility of including multiple stakeholders for proper law enforcement. Shri Asit Sen, Chief Commissioner, Income Tax department highlighted the link between rational rates, strong enforcement, and robust tax collections. All the speakers elaborated on the role of technology and management principles in improving the effectiveness of their departments.
The third Panel included multiple high-ranking retired generals who expounded on “Leadership lessons from Military.” The illustrious sons of the country demonstrated how the traditions of India’s armed forces enabled them to convert “boys to men” by forging in them capabilities like self-denial, responsibility, hardiness, discipline, quick thinking, and effective communication. Lt. General A.K. Singh enumerated the basic qualities of army officers with examples while Lt. General Manvender Singh discussed the leadership traditions and practices of Indian Military Academy. Through personal anecdotes, Maj. General A.K. Shukla and Maj. General V.K. Singh demonstrated how army officers develop the capacities for quick thinking, hardiness, and sacrifice. The speakers brilliantly brought out the spirit behind the army credo that exhorts officers to care for their country first, their soldiers second and themselves last and enables them to make the supreme sacrifice for their country and troops.
The last keynote speaker Dr. Gautam Sen, Professor, London School of Economies, concluded the ceremony with an intellectually scintillating presentation that brought out the importance of narrative in determining the destiny of countries and individuals. He highlighted the different ingredients such as ideology; dexterous mixing of ideas and facts and advertising that go in crafting a successful narrative and exhorted the students to be on the guard against harmful narratives that might engender India’s rise as a world power.